New favorite No. 1 - Non-prefix .243

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south_ridge

Single-Sixer
Joined
Feb 28, 2010
Messages
276
Location
Mid-Missouri
Guys,

I have a new favorite No. 1. It's a non-prefix (SN 41xx) .243 with a 26" barrel and AH forearm that numbers to the gun. It has been used but not abused. This is most evident from some slight bluing loss at the muzzle and the darkened wood at the pistol grip from being handled and shot a fair amount - or maybe from a bit too much oil.

Most importantly, I took it out a couple of days ago and shot it for the first time and it looks like it's about a 1" gun with Hornady American Whitetail ammunition (100 grain).

I always like getting my hands on these early Number 1s. They're what the guns should be in terms of fit and finish.



I caught a break on this one on the used gun rack at Cabela's a few months ago. I got it - with the 4-12x Redfield - for $800. I figured that was my reward for looking at hundreds of overpriced buns there over the years.

SR
 

wunbe

Buckeye
Joined
May 19, 2002
Messages
1,240
Location
Reston VA USA
That is not the usual 1A or 1S profile. I have not heard of any of either being factory made w/o iron sights. An after-market hybrid?

wunbe
 

rowdy1972

Single-Sixer
Joined
Nov 24, 2011
Messages
144
Location
penna
This isnt a 1A or a 1S, Its a BH. The non-prefix years are about the time the were produced, With a few exceptions I expect.

It was a steal at that price.
 

south_ridge

Single-Sixer
Joined
Feb 28, 2010
Messages
276
Location
Mid-Missouri
Yes, it's a BH. I'm not a #1 expert by any means. However, I do have Clayton's book and have also spent some time on Lee's website looking at rarity tables.

It just so happened that I had recently read through quite a bit of Clayton's book for some other reason when I stumbled across this rifle. When I saw it, I thought "that's not a common variation". But the key was the forearm. I asked the guy at Cabela's if he could take it off so I could look at it. He originally said they couldn't do that. But I explained to him that they were serialized on some of the early guns and I wanted to make sure it matched the number on the receiver. At that point I guess he thought I was serious and not just some guy who came in and asked him to take guns apart, so he did it. I was pleased with what I found.

And after all of that, I still got him to take another $100 off. Like I said, this doesn't match up with most of the rest of the time I've spent looking at used guns at Cabela's. The only bad thing is it probably gives me confidence to keep going back there and looking through the racks for another five years. Time well spent and time wasted, all at the same time...

SR
 

gewehrfreund

Buckeye
Joined
Apr 7, 2006
Messages
1,140
Location
central New York
You got that rare rifle at an unheard of price, especially with the era-correct Redfield scope!
I dread the day that the average gun store employee picks up on the true value of these rifles.

I wish I could stumble onto buys like that around here. It's probably a good thing that I don't have a Cabelas nearby :roll:

The BH is probably my favorite non-prefix variation, but I'd still like to find a few BHS's just the same :)
I have three BH's at the moment, including a nice 243 that also has proven to be superbly accurate.
 

south_ridge

Single-Sixer
Joined
Feb 28, 2010
Messages
276
Location
Mid-Missouri
I have bought/sold/traded a few No. 1s in the past few years, trying to find just the right one. I think this is it...pretty rare, but already pre-used 'just enough' so I don't feel bad shooting it and hunting with it. Plus I really like .243s - just enough power to be useful, but light-recoiling enough that you can shoot it as much as you like.

I shot my No. 3 in .22 Hornet at the same time. It's almost as much fun.
 

chet15

Hawkeye
Joined
Jan 22, 2001
Messages
5,749
Location
Dawson, Iowa
The BH is a great configuration, with maybe only 150 made in .243 with non prefix serial number.
From 1967 to 1969 the Number 1 was pretty much available with custom options with your choice of barrel weight, with open sights or without sights and with beavertail forearm or Alex Henry forearm, and even a model with Target Blocks with beavertail or Alex Henry Forearm.
The 1H-s were standard in the Non-prefix in .458 or .375 with iron sights and heavy barrel...but each of those is rare as well.
In 1969 or 1970 Ruger decided to standardize their catalog offerings and for the most part cataloged the most popular configuration/caliber combinations.
Never did understand why they got rid of the .222 though. In the non-prefix that is one of the most common chamberings, but after that the caliber was dropped.
Same thing with the .308 which at least made a limited reappearance a few years ago, and most recently.
Chet15
 

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